Trade Regulation Updates

Statement By Minister Ng On Canada’s Request For CUSMA Dispute Settlement Consultations With United States On Canadian Solar Products

January 7, 2021

The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion and International Trade, today issued the following statement regarding Canada’s request for consultations with the United States under Chapter 31 of the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) with respect to continued U.S. safeguard tariffs on Canadian solar products:

“Canada is a trusted partner of the United States with long-established cross-border supply chains that enhance North American competitiveness, strengthen U.S. national security, and benefit citizens on both sides of the border.

“Canada has requested consultations with the United States on its continued tariffs on solar products, as first steps in the CUSMA dispute settlement process. These tariffs are unwarranted and clearly violate the provisions and the spirit of CUSMA.

“As we work to rebuild our economies and overcome the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada and the United States must work together through strong cross-border climate action to attract investment in the North American economy, cut pollution, strengthen supply chains, and grow jobs for people on both sides of the border in the increasingly competitive low-carbon global economy.

“Canada will always stand up for its workers and against unjustified trade actions. If Canada and the United States are not able to resolve this action through consultations, Canada may request the establishment of a dispute settlement panel to adjudicate the matter.”

Quick Facts

  • Every day, almost $3 billion worth of goods and services crosses the Canada-United States border. In 2019, this amounted to nearly $1 trillion worth of goods and services exchanged between Canada and the United States.
  • Since they were imposed in early 2018, the U.S. safeguard tariffs have caused Canada’s exports of solar products to the United States to decline by as much as 82%.
  • In 1994, the United States, Mexico, and Canada created the largest free trade region in the world with the North American Free Trade Agreement, generating economic growth and helping to raise the standard of living for the people of all 3 member countries.
  • The new CUSMA came into force on July 1, 2020, preserving key elements of the long-lasting trading relationship and incorporating new and updated provisions that seek to address 21st-century trade issues.

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